What sad news to come to at the end of the day!!! One of my all time favorite actors, James Arness, has passed away today of natural causes at the age of 88. If you’re a regular reader here on the blog, Mr. Arness was no stranger. He was a big man towering over most at 6 foot 7 and, with his deep mighty voice, he was an actor not to be reckoned with. Jim was good friends with John Wayne, and together they made many pictures. John Wayne was offered the role of Matt Dillon for a new TV western called Gunsmoke; without hesitation he offered the role to his good friend who took on the part of Marshal Dillion from 1955 to 1975. At one point in time, CBS had both Gilligan’s Island and Gunsmoke on the air at the same time; due to a new season of shows, one of the viewers’ favorites had to go…. The producers chose Gunsmoke.
From as far back as I can remember, I watched that show until the very end in 1975. Mr. Arness starred in many, many pictures such as “Island on the Top of the World”, “Hondo” and a couple of SCI FI Classics, “THEM” and “The Thing”. James will always be one of my favorites and, along with all you fellow fans out there, we will all miss him greatly.
God’s speed, Jim, and prayers to your family.
Below are some links about Jim from past blog posts as well as a grab from Jim’s page.